The Canon RF 300mm f/2.8L IS USM appears to be getting closer [CR3]

Jack Douglas

CR for the Humour
Apr 10, 2013
6,946
2,529
Alberta, Canada
What is it about this lens that you find desirable? Serious question. I know it is the "affordable" big white, but it seems to me that 300mm would be too short for most of what I want a big white for. I'd end up using it with a 2x converter almost all the time and would then be limited to "just" 600mm at f5.6. Not a "bad" option, but I wonder if the compromises of a converter would make it worth the investment. It seems like a 400 f4 DO (if an RF version is ever made) would be a more versatile lens at about the same price.

If you could buy only one "big white" would this be your choice?
After a few years with 400 I don't miss my 300 at all except it had a better MFD. Bare 300 was seldom used and 420 not that much either. But my subjects are typically birds. Big game would be a different story though.

Jack
 

Danglin52

Wildlife Shooter
Aug 8, 2018
312
336
I have to imagine that type of lens is coming eventually. The 200-400/4 is almost 10 years old.
I am greedy, I want the integrated 1.4x TC even though it would push up the aperture when engaged. My dream was the 200-400/500 + 1.4x TC with the weight/size loss program. I loved my but long and heavy. IQ was great.
 

unfocused

EOS-1D X Mark III
Jul 20, 2010
6,909
4,969
69
Springfield, IL
www.mgordoncommunications.com
I can’t remember what bodies you have. I’m finding that I’m as satisfied with results I’m getting with the RF 100-400/500 on the R7 and R5 as I ever was with the primes on my DSLRs.
R3 and R5. Yes, I find the 100-500 to be pretty much ideal for me. On the other hand, when I rented the 600 f4 a few years back (on DSLRs) I was amazed at the overall performance. We are going back down to Sanibel in February and may rent it again for that.
 

AlanF

Stay at home
CR Pro
Aug 16, 2012
10,126
16,197
With the 300, you can always crop to get a 400mm FOV. If the subject is too close with the 400, you're stuck.

I never shoot birds. I just don't have the patience.
With the 100-500mm, you beat out both the 300mm and 400mm primes for distance constraints, which is the major reason why zooms are so popular as well as their close focussing. If you use the 400mm on FF, you have the field of view of a 250mm on an APS-C crop, which is one important reason why I prefer a high resolution FF to APS-C - you can always crop down to APS-C format.
 
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AlanF

Stay at home
CR Pro
Aug 16, 2012
10,126
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R3 and R5. Yes, I find the 100-500 to be pretty much ideal for me. On the other hand, when I rented the 600 f4 a few years back (on DSLRs) I was amazed at the overall performance. We are going back down to Sanibel in February and may rent it again for that.
The further you get into retirement, the less the appeal of carrying a 600/4. I appreciate the RF 100-400mm more and more...
 
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Bob Howland

EOS R
CR Pro
Mar 25, 2012
822
484
With the 100-500mm, you beat out both the 300mm and 400mm primes for distance constraints, which is the major reason why zooms are so popular as well as their close focussing. If you use the 400mm on FF, you have the field of view of a 250mm on an APS-C crop, which is one important reason why I prefer a high resolution FF to APS-C - you can always crop down to APS-C format.
Shooting large aperture primes wide open tends to blur the background, which is important if the background is a bunch of colorfully-dressed fans watching the competition. They are a distraction from the player being emphasized. That is why professional sports shooters typically use big white primes, especially the 400 f/2.8.
 

bbasiaga

Canon Shooter
Nov 15, 2011
568
715
USA
Sight...i'm going to want it, but there will be no way I could afford it. If the EF last sold for about $6k USD (I think), I'll bet this one is $8-9k. Maybe canon is feeling saucy and will put it at $10k.

-Brian
 
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InchMetric

Switched from Nikon. Still zooming the wrong way.
CR Pro
Jun 22, 2021
245
269
With the 800 and 1200 signaling future pricing, I suspect that in addition to $1000-2000 hikes in the 400 and 600, we’ll see a new price level for this one. $6999 or $7999?
 

AlanF

Stay at home
CR Pro
Aug 16, 2012
10,126
16,197
Shooting large aperture primes wide open tends to blur the background, which is important if the background is a bunch of colorfully-dressed fans watching the competition. They are a distraction from the player being emphasized. That is why professional sports shooters typically use big white primes, especially the 400 f/2.8.
Yes, it's horses for courses. With more and more AI coming along that can successfully blur background, I wonder if the days of big wide aperture lenses that are used for that are limited?
 

tiggy@mac.com

R5
CR Pro
Jan 20, 2014
849
854
Thetford, VT
www.camnostic.com
Would love to see an RF 300mm f/2.8 designed from the ground up to take advantage of mirrorless in terms of weight and size (vs. simply bolting an RF mount onto existing EF designs and jacking up the price, like the RF 400 f/2.8 and RF 600 f/4).

If indeed we get a "real" RF 300mm f/2.8 new design, then it would bode well for a future RF 500mm f/4. Those two are often scheduled to release around one another. If the 500 gets the "weight loss program" that it never received for the RF mount, I might consider ditching my EF 600mm f/4 II for it.

I own the ancient (1992?) non-IS version of the EF 300 f/2.8. Image quality isn't nearly as good as the IS versions, but it's still pretty good. I find I want to use it for certain wildlife situations (woodcock peenting in evening on the ground, for instance), and also for events. I'm shooting a conference on Saturday, and the thing that might make me keep it at home is the enormous weight. Light is usually terrible at these events, and I often wish I'd brought it.
 

EOS 4 Life

EOS R
Sep 20, 2020
1,419
1,133
Yes, it's horses for courses. With more and more AI coming along that can successfully blur background, I wonder if the days of big wide aperture lenses that are used for that are limited?
Wider apertures are also better in low light
 

wsmith96

Advancing Amateur
Aug 17, 2012
954
50
Texas
For me, the main use case will be ‘typical’ field lighting for high school sports at night (i.e., not very bright) with a need for high shutter speeds. For wider shots I have the 70-200/2.8, but the extra 100mm keeping f/2.8 will be useful.

I suppose I could consider the RF 400/2.8 instead, but most of the time 300mm will be long enough and when not I can live with a stop more noise and add the 1.4x.


No, it wouldn’t be. 300mm with the possibility of 600/5.6 would not be versatile enough for me, either, since I frequently shoot birds. But I’m fortunate to not be limited to buying only one big white – I already have the EF 600/4 II, which I use most of the time with the 1.4x III for 840/5.6.
I use mine for high school football and band shooting. It does just fine there. I don't miss a 400 at all. In some cases, later in the season, I've used the 135 f/2 for both football and band with great results after cropping a bit. Most of my photos go online for the boosters, so cropping for 'reach' off of a 5D Mk4 isn't an issue at all.
 

AlanF

Stay at home
CR Pro
Aug 16, 2012
10,126
16,197
Wider apertures are also better in low light
Very true, and the wider the better to lower diffraction as well. With classic technology, lens diameter is all important. But, with advances in computing and AI there will be and already are some digital workarounds that will be good enough or even better for most of us.
 
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SUNDOG04

EOS 90D
CR Pro
Mar 1, 2015
134
94
This is what I hate about Canon. I have the Ef 300mm 2.8 II. It’s a really good lens. I’d go so far as to say it’s the best Canon lens. Very happy to use it with an R5. No intention of buying an RF version (expecting same lens with a permanent adapter attached). Then Canon come along with an RF version that’s shorter and lighter. Please please please let the image quality be worse or I’ll be tempted by it. How could it be lighter and shorter. It was already reasonably light.
It would not surprise me to see Canon make this form over function then expect us to fix in post processing. Not very pleased to see Canon doing this. An example is the heavy vignetting with the 16-35 f4. I have the EF version and love it.
 

neuroanatomist

I post too Much on Here!!
CR Pro
Jul 21, 2010
27,556
7,341
Not very pleased to see Canon doing this. An example is the heavy vignetting with the 16-35 f4. I have the EF version and love it.
The RF version starts at 14mm (which is really closer to 13.5mm). I find that by 16mm, the distortion and vignetting aren’t much worse than the EF 16-35/4. Of course, those extra 2.5mm aren’t exactly free.
 
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